About Katy

Katy Barnett is a professor at the University of Melbourne, specialising in remedies law, but with an interest in many, many other things: trust law, animal law, legal history, behavioural economics, religious law and comparative law. In 2016 she received the Barbara Falk Award for Excellence in Teaching, and in 2013, she was a visiting scholar at Brasenose College, Oxford. She is currently an Articles Editor for the Indian Law Review.

The views expressed here are entirely her own.

Katy fell into academia by accident: prior to this, she was a commercial litigator, and also worked as an associate (clerk) for the Honourable Justice Mandie at the Supreme Court of Victoria and as a researcher for the Victorian Court of Appeal.

Katy has majors in English literature, History and Medieval Studies, and also studied Japanese at university. One of her goals is to make legal academic writing more accessible to the public. She and Professor Jeremy Gans published Guilty Pigs: the weird and wonderful history of animal law in 2022, for a non-legal audience, with this goal in mind.

In her free time, Katy spends time with her family, and enjoys art, calligraphy and crafts of various kinds. She has written a Young Adult novel, The Earth Below, which was Highly Commended in the 2016 Victorian Premier's Unpublished Manuscript Award, and published by Ligature Pty Ltd in 2019. She has self-published her second novel, The Hidden People. It’s a fantasy novel not related to the first, and draws on her knowledge of medieval history, Celtic and Norse myth, Shakespeare and bee law.

In 2020, Katy’s autobiographical piece, ‘I don’t dance like the other cats’ (describing how she has overcome lifelong difficulties with walking associated with cerebral palsy) was the most read story on Right Now.

This excellent picture of a pink katydid (which is used on the introduction page) is taken by Marina Schwartz and comes from here. Now Katy wants to feed katydids rose petals of various colours so that she gets a rainbow assortment of them…

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Katy Barnett’s personal substack: mother, wife, academic, lawyer, author (not necessarily in that order)


Wife, mother, academic, lawyer, author. Professor at Melbourne Law School specialising in remedies law, contract, tort, equity, animal law and legal history. Member of Heterodox Academy. Generally interested in everything.